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Joe Miller

Court answers questions about Miller's judgeship

  • Author: Jill Burke
  • Updated: June 30, 2016
  • Published October 8, 2010

The clerk for the U.S. District Court in Alaska issued a press release (PDF) Friday explaining in greater detail the working relationship between Joe Miller and his wife, Kathleen, and the circumstances under which she was fired.

Joe Miller is Alaska's GOP primary nominee for U.S. Senate. In 2002 he accepted a job as a part-time U.S. magistrate judge in Fairbanks and hired his wife to clerk for him. Miller recently acknowledged that he later fired his wife after court policy about hiring family members changed, and that after her employment ended she filed for and accepted unemployment benefits.

According to the release, authored by Clerk Marvel Hansbraugh:

-- Joe Miller worked as a magistrate judge from June 13, 2002 to June 1, 2004.

-- Kathleen Miller provided clerical assistance to him from June to December 2002.

-- It is common for judges to use personnel from their private law practices to assist with the administrative needs of the court.

-- Miller was initially told it was OK to for him to hire his wife in such a capacity.

-- Sometime later, the chief judge at the time advised Miller the employment relationship might in fact be prohibited, at which time Miller terminated his wife's employment

Contact Jill Burke at jill(at)

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